Help - Search - Members - Calendar
Full Version: Game effects of alcohol
Dumpshock Forums > Discussion > Shadowrun
Pages: 1, 2
ogbendog
what house rules have peole done for drunks? Alcohol is a "legal" addiction (unlike nicotine) so what's the game effect of being drunk?
stevebugge
Depends how drunk you are. -1 Agility and -1 Reaction, -1 Logic, 2 levels of Pain Tolerance, is what I use for a character that's pretty wasted.
Wiz In Red
The way we play, a person stay reasonably sober as long as the number of drinks does not exceed the natural points of body for the character (ie no drinking bonus for ceramic bonelacing). After that, all active and knowledge skills get a +1 TN per drink until you either sleep it off or have massive amounts of Nukit Burgers (or Burritos will suffice). Besides that, we don't usually encourage drinking before going on a job...stealth and aim seem to go to shit.
Azralon
I'd say one drink of alcohol does 2S damage, soaked by Body. 4S for a "double," and so forth.

Seems the simplest way to do it.
Rotbart van Dainig
It gives -2 dice on social tests.
stevebugge
QUOTE (Rotbart van Dainig)
It gives -2 dice on social tests.

Except when dealing with other drunks.
Jaid
social tests are used by both participants. thus, the -2 would cancel out. no need to come up with the exception if both persons are drunk.
Rotbart van Dainig
QUOTE (stevebugge)
QUOTE (Rotbart van Dainig @ Dec 20 2005, 01:01 PM)
It gives -2 dice on social tests.

Except when dealing with other drunks.

Nope, even on that occasion. wink.gif
TheHappyAnarchist
I wonder why. Social drinking is a very popular pasttime and indeed, certain well known social skills are often used with or influenced by alcohol.

Why make -2 on all social skill tests? Drunk people don't seduce others? Drunk people don't show other people a good time, or make them laugh? Angry drunks don't scare the piss out of people?
stevebugge
My "except when dealing with other drunks" addendum was to describe the oft observed but inexplicable phenomona that two drunk people often get along better than if they were both sober. Similarly sober people have almost as difficult a time dealing with drunks as drunks have dealing with sober people.
ogbendog
heck, the penalty should be a bonus.

"I love you man !"

"I love you too !!! <buuuurp>"

"Let's call your ex-girlfriend, it's only 3 am"

"OK!"
Inigo Carmine
QUOTE (TheHappyAnarchist)
I wonder why. Social drinking is a very popular pasttime and indeed, certain well known social skills are often used with or influenced by alcohol.

Alcohol makes you braver and more apt to disregard your insecurities and inhibitions. It does not make you "better" at social things. It's really a roleplaying thing, and not a mechanical bonus.

It would go in stages. Initiailly, it would probably be a -1 to all checks, but give an equal benefit to ignore the same amount of penalty from both stun and physical. (you don't resist damage better, but you can ignore the effects of it easier)

Also, probably decrease the amount of ones needed to glitch by that same amount. (bad things tend to happen, like tripping over stationary objects).

Afterwords, the penalties would start being higher than the bonuses.

Any test to resist fear is not subject to the dice penalty, but instead gets a bonus = to the penalty it would have had.
Moon-Hawk
QUOTE (ogbendog)
"Let's call your ex-girlfriend, it's only 3 am"

I have a theory that anyone...anyone...when sufficiently drunk, will decide that calling someone (particular a current or ex significant other) on the phone is a very good idea.
Azralon
QUOTE (Rotbart van Dainig)
It gives -2 dice on social tests.

Covered by the penalties of accumulating Stun damage, per my method. smile.gif

Besides, drink enough booze and you pass out. Sounds like Stun damage to me!
ElFenrir
Yeah, booze CAN kill you, but that's what overflow is for. In real life, passing out is a body's defensive mechanism saying 'too much!!' but if you pound, say, an entire bottle of 151 at once, in about 10 minutes you resist would be like 20 S...resisted with only body.

So it COULD kill you, in a sense.
Tanka
It could, sure. Granted, so can breathing.

Most likely you'd pass out fairly quickly, throw up the contents of your stomach, then wake up and have one hell of a hangover. And have to piss. A lot.

A lightly buzzed character would most likely get a +1 to Charisma and Body and -1 to Perception and Intuition. (While buzzed, I maintain almost all of my manual dexterity and reaction time.)

A drunk character would probably get a +2 to Body and Pain Tolerance 2, as well as a -1 to Reaction and Agility, a -2 to Intuition and Perception, and a -1 to Willpower. They then recieve the skills "Drunk Dialing" and "Drunk English" at a rating of somewhere around 2 or 3.
stevebugge
In Shadotech or Man & Machine I think it was the Nephretic Screen essentially made it impossible for you to get drunk. Not sure if toxin filters work that way too. Has anyone ever used any of this 'ware to win a drinking contest?

Worse yet anyone ever used it to survive deliberately poisoning themselves to 1. trick someone in to poisoning themselves at the same time or 2. to frame someone else?
Apathy
The basic idea of alcohol being a 2(stun) toxin seems good, but the overdose rules are kind of wishy-washy. No self-respecting bar-fly has just one shot. How many shots in how quick a time moves the power level how much. Because my troll will never get drunk if he just has to score 2 successes with 11 dice.

ogbendog
heh, you could treat every N drinks as a level 1 stim patch. so you feel no pain, but eventauly start taking stun damage
ElFenrir
Besides Drunk Dialing and Drunk English, don't forget 'Drunk SMS' and 'Drunken Pick Up Lines' knowledge skill.
Tanka
Drunk SMS (or texting, as we like to call it here in the States) falls as a specialization under Drunk Dialing. Or would that be under Drunk English?

Oh, hell, I don't know. Maybe I should get drunk and find out.
ElFenrir
I find that while drunk and speaking another language, you begin to speak your non native language more often. My mother tounge is English, but my second language is Finnish, and while drunk i sometimes forget my English. nyahnyah.gif That can be instated somehow.
stevebugge
So it sounds like we need to create a mechanic that deals with levels of drunkness and determines what it takes to get there.

I'll throw this out, when drinking Alcohol the player takes (2+1 for every drink consumed within Body * 10 minutes)S Appropriate Toxin Filters apply. Drinking stun should be tracked to determine how drunk the character is based on body

Up to 1/4 of Body: A little Buzzed -1 Logic, -1 to social skills, 1 level of Pain Tolerance

1/4 to 1/2 Body: Drunk -1 Agility and -1 Reaction, -1 Logic, -1 to social skills, 2 levels of Pain Tolerance

1/2 to 3/4: Tanked (maybe passed out by this point) -2 Agility and -2 Reaction, -2 Logic, -2 to social skills, 3 levels of Pain Tolerance

3/4 or more: Completely Blitzed (probably passed out) -3 Agility and -3 Reaction, -3 Logic, -3 to social skills, -1 to Charisma 3 levels of Pain Tolerance

Suggestions, Improvements, good drunken stories?
ogbendog
so if i'm smalling 1 drink per 10 minutes. with a body of 3(average human) I take 2+3 = 5S every 30 minutes. on average 4

if I'm an average troll with body 7, I take 2+7 = 9 every 70 minutes. on average 5. So trolls take longer to get drunk.

Tanka
I always thought it was an unspoken rule that Elves get drunk fastest, Humans second fastest, Orks tying up with Dwarves, and Trolls being the Olympic-style drinkers we see in films about college life.
stevebugge
That's the idea, an average Troll should drink an average Human under the table most of the time. The actual math may need some tweaking.
Apathy
QUOTE (stevebugge)
So it sounds like we need to create a mechanic that deals with levels of drunkness and determines what it takes to get there.

I'll throw this out, when drinking Alcohol the player takes (2+1 for every drink consumed within Body * 10 minutes)S Appropriate Toxin Filters apply.  Drinking stun should be tracked to determine how drunk the character is based on body

Up to 1/4 of Body: A little Buzzed -1 Logic, -1 to social skills, 1 level of Pain Tolerance

1/4 to 1/2 Body: Drunk -1 Agility and -1 Reaction, -1 Logic, -1 to social skills, 2 levels of Pain Tolerance

1/2 to 3/4: Tanked (maybe passed out by this point) -2 Agility and -2 Reaction, -2 Logic, -2 to social skills, 3 levels of Pain Tolerance

3/4 or more: Completely Blitzed (probably passed out) -3 Agility and -3 Reaction, -3 Logic, -3 to social skills, -1 to Charisma 3 levels of Pain Tolerance

Suggestions, Improvements, good drunken stories?

This mechanism means that big guys take longer to notice initial effects than small guys [70 minutes vs 30 minutes] (which I'm pretty much ok with), but that when the alchohol does finally hit them it hits them harder [9S vs 5S].
  • After 70 minutes using the aforementioned scenario, average guy has had to resist 5S twice, probably has 8 boxes [out of 10] of stun and is close to unconcious.
  • In the same timeframe the troll has had to resist 9S once, probably has 7 boxes [out of 12] of stun and is tanked, but not completely blitzed.

Does this seem about right, or should body play more of a factor?
stevebugge
QUOTE (Apathy)
QUOTE (stevebugge)
So it sounds like we need to create a mechanic that deals with levels of drunkness and determines what it takes to get there.

I'll throw this out, when drinking Alcohol the player takes (2+1 for every drink consumed within Body * 10 minutes)S Appropriate Toxin Filters apply.† Drinking stun should be tracked to determine how drunk the character is based on body

Up to 1/4 of Body: A little Buzzed -1 Logic, -1 to social skills, 1 level of Pain Tolerance

1/4 to 1/2 Body: Drunk -1 Agility and -1 Reaction, -1 Logic, -1 to social skills, 2 levels of Pain Tolerance

1/2 to 3/4: Tanked (maybe passed out by this point) -2 Agility and -2 Reaction, -2 Logic, -2 to social skills, 3 levels of Pain Tolerance

3/4 or more: Completely Blitzed (probably passed out) -3 Agility and -3 Reaction, -3 Logic, -3 to social skills, -1 to Charisma 3 levels of Pain Tolerance

Suggestions, Improvements, good drunken stories?

This mechanism means that big guys take longer to notice initial effects than small guys [70 minutes vs 30 minutes] (which I'm pretty much ok with), but that when the alchohol does finally hit them it hits them harder [9S vs 5S].
  • After 70 minutes using the aforementioned scenario, average guy has had to resist 5S twice, probably has 8 boxes [out of 10] of stun and is close to unconcious.
  • In the same timeframe the troll has had to resist 9S once, probably has 7 boxes [out of 12] of stun and is tanked, but not completely blitzed.
Does this seem about right, or should body play more of a factor?

Yeah that's the part I thought might need a little tweaking. It seems like a bigger guy should be able to drink more with less effect, but then it may be just delayed effect. On the other hand even if it isn't totally accurate if it works well enough to resolve things like drinking contests you could just use it. I just made it up based on what had gone through the thread so far.

Or maybe we should do some actual test drinking to see what really happens, I'll drink you take notes smile.gif

(2+1 for every drink consumed within Body * 10 minutes - Bod/2)S Appropriate Toxin Filters apply

Might work a little better?
Moon-Hawk
Thread necromancy!
I could've started a new thread and linked to this one for reference, but then what would be the point?
I think the formulas people are presenting here are getting slightly out of control. In the interest of SR4's simplification and streamlining, how would you stat alcohol?
Is it a drug or a toxin?
I was thinking either, as a Toxin:
Vector: Ingestion
Speed: 10 minutes
Penetration: 0
Power: 3
Effect: Stun Damage, Nausea

Or maybe it would be better statting it as a drug, for example:
Duration: (7-Body) hours. Minimum 1 hour
Effect: -1 Agility, -1 Reaction, -1 Logic, 1 level of pain tolerance.
Description: Note that there is a penalty to social skills on the social skills table.

Using it as a drug lets me assign more specific penalties, and give the pain tolerance as a bonus, but the drug rules don't handle steadily increasing doses very well. The toxin rules are perfect for this, but don't generally give the pain resistance I was hoping for. I could slap pain resistance on the toxin as a special effect but it would, in general, counteract the stun damage.
Is there a way to stat a reasonable approximation of alcohol that fits into the framework of the existing rules for toxins or drugs?
Fortune
If you can't take an Addiction Quality for it, then it shouldn't qualify as either.
ReallyBored
QUOTE (Fortune)
If you can't take an Addiction Quality for it, then it shouldn't qualify as either.

You can take addiction for alcohol, you can't take it for nicotine or caffeine.
Fortune
Oh yeah. Don't mind me ... it's been a long night. embarrassed.gif

Personally, I don't think alcohol should be nearly as bad as most of the other posters seem to feel. I tend to treat it as a roleplaying thing, and when I feel it goes far enough and the need arises, I just asign a minor Perception and/or Reaction penalty and call it a day. I think it cramps the players' style if you come down too hard on the fringe activities that bring the setting to life. That's why I really dislike pretty much every incarnation of the Drug/Addiction rules that Shadowrun has published.
Moon-Hawk
Generally speaking, Fortune, I agree with you. All the previous versions of the drug/addiction rules have been hopelessly unusable. I like that 4th edition only calls for an addiction test when the GM feels it is appropriate, and I certianly don't intend to crack down on fringe activities. I would LOVE to see more PCs doing BTLs or novacoke.
But my current situation is one player wanting a character who is a pretty serious alcoholic, and will be drinking to excess, and I would like some stats for alcohol for it. This is NOT something I'm going to use every time someone orders a drink at the bar, but if someone is at the bar having five drinks before a meet with a Johnson, I'd like something consistent.

note: This character will not be "Cool, I get drunk! Are there any girls there?!", he's a good RPer and wants to play someone wrestling with alcoholism.
Fortune
Quick and dirty ...

Willpower check per drink, with a Threshold of # of drinks - 1/2 Body Attribute.

1st failure effect: -1 Perception
2nd failure effect: -1 Reaction
3rd failure effect: 1 box of unsoakable stun damage
... rince and repeat.

Thoughts?
Moon-Hawk
Simple, fair, and reasonably accurate, but entirely unlike existing mechanics for either drugs or toxins.
Fortune
QUOTE (Moon-Hawk)
... but entirely unlike existing mechanics for either drugs or toxins.

And that matters because ... ?
ChicagosFinest
Dont forget alcohol is a depressant. It depresses the body and is one of the most common drug addictions and dehydrates you if you have a lot.

Upon cessation or decrease of use, the physiological dependency can lead to physical withdrawal symptoms, such as restlessness, trouble sleeping, "the shakes," or even death!

Consult your doctor is you dont think Alcohol is right for you biggrin.gif .

That was from Wikipedia
Moon-Hawk
QUOTE (Fortune)
QUOTE (Moon-Hawk @ Nov 17 2006, 09:20 AM)
... but entirely unlike existing mechanics for either drugs or toxins.

And that matters because ... ?

Strictly speaking, absolutely nothing. When the standard mechanic/system fails, then you need to make something completely different up. I'm fine with that.
But one of the major points of 4th ed, as I understand it, was simplification and streamlining. Given that, and all other things being equal, I'd rather fit it into the existing toxin/drug framework than use something else.
Although I fully admit the possibility that the existing mechanic is not capable of modelling alcohol to a reasonably approximate degree, but that's what I'm looking for opinions on.
Fortune
Alrighty then. smile.gif
Demerzel
QUOTE
Quick and dirty ...

Willpower check per drink, with a Threshold of # of drinks - 1/2 Body Attribute.

1st failure effect: -1 Perception
2nd failure effect: -1 Reaction
3rd failure effect: 1 box of unsoakable stun damage
... rince and repeat.

Thoughts?


Average Human, Bod 3, Rea 3, Wil 3.

First 2 drinks 0 effect.

Drink 3: Wil (1) test
Drink 4: Wil (2) test
Drink 5: Wil (3) test

Drink 6+: Wil (4+) test but without edge you canít get 4 hits on 3 dice so all further drinks just tack on the appropriate effect.

Lets assume the worst case and Mr. Average fails all three tests he can try. He will become incapacitated when he loses 3 reaction since dropping any stat to zero basically incapacitates you in one way or another.

So now, if Mr. Average fails his three tests he will have that occur at drink 10. He will have incurred 2s stun, and still be conscious, just unable to act in any way due to a complete lack of reaction. But he can solve calculus problems (logic). Also Iíve personally seen people drink themselves unconscious, and it would be virtually impossible under that system.

So the drawbacks are:
It does not really model reality.
It is a mechanic entirely alien to SR4.

Take a toxin based system where it is a 10 minute onset and some variable stun damage resisted with body, similar to what is suggested above and youíve got penalties increasing as you get closer and closer to unconscious, and you can vary the kick of a drink by varying the damage code. That glass of wine may only be 3s, but that troll grunge barís small beer may be 6s.
Fortune
Yeah ... I just didn't really believe it was a necessity for a 'quick and dirty' system for use solely for PC inebriation to be modeled on the baseline human. And I did specify that it was 'quick and dirty'.

Work it out with numbers closer to those of the average PC and you'll see that it does enough to serve its purpose, while not overly gimping the player(s) who might otherwise enjoy exploring this aspect of the Sixth World.

The canon toxin/addiction rules just suck.
Demerzel
So I guess my question is, what's wrong with the canon toxin/addiction rules?
Jack Kain
We should remember that how alcohol effects Joe Average isn't important. Its how it effects Joe PC.
Moon-Hawk
QUOTE (Demerzel)
So I guess my question is, what's wrong with the canon toxin/addiction rules?

Well, I'm guessing that the place where people like Fortune and myself get our hate for the addiction rules is that in all previous incarnations of the rules, they basically boiled down to: If your PC ever looks at a BTL or drinks a beer, they will be face-down dead in a gutter somewhere in three months. Four if they roll well.

Personally, I think the SR4 mechanics are a lot better in this regard, and a moderate drug habit can be realistically maintained indefinitely.

I'm definitely leaning towards the toxin version that I quoted above, but varying the power of the toxin depending on the drink as Demerzel suggests.
Fortune
QUOTE (Moon-Hawk)
If your PC ever looks at a BTL or drinks a beer, they will be face-down dead in a gutter somewhere in three months. Four if they roll well.

Pretty much. I just find the overly crippling effects of drugs (toxins I don't mind quite as much) inane in this type of game setting.
Moon-Hawk
Really? I mean, I agree that overly crippling effects of drugs would be inane in this type of game. My question is, do you find the effects of drugs in SR4 to be overly crippling? Are you talking about crash effects, or burnout? Severe addiction and burnout are possible only if the GM asks for an addiction test, which is explicitly not every time the character uses drugs. It's only when the GM feels they're being used excessively.
I'm feeling like 4th ed is the first time a drug-using character is a really viable option. Unfortunatley, I haven't had a player really get into that yet. (although I will soon), so I'm interested to hear specifically why you feel it's still so crippling.
Fortune
Oh, it's better in SR4 ... if you have a reasonable GM.

Seriously though, if it was up to me, Addiction would be pretty much down to a character choice, and almost solely limited to roleplaying. I would give minor modifiers for when the character is hopped up on the drug, and other similarly minor modifiers for when he was hangin' out for a fix. Other than that, I don't need to make it a crippling, or even life-threatening thing. There's enough of that kind of stuff going around in other areas of the setting to ruin the flavor of a perfectly good roleplaying concept with rules that no sane Player would subject themselves to.
Moon-Hawk
Oh, okay.
I think they have to do it that way, though. They have to cover their butts, and if a group isn't comfortable with drugs and thinks that smoking a joint leads to inevitable burnout then they can roll addiction tests to their hearts' content.
If a group is more comfortable with that subject matter, then the GM can just let it go without tests.
But if they didn't leave it up to the GM and instead had solid rules, then it's impossible to hit a good middle ground. Either you get the addiction abomination from previous editions, or an implicit endorsement of drug use.
Fortune
QUOTE (Moon-Hawk @ Nov 18 2006, 04:46 AM)
or an implicit endorsement of drug use.

I do understand what you're saying, but this is a game where murder is glorified, theft is expected, kidnapping is an everyday occurance, organleggers are your friend, and even child sex is mentioned in the main rulebook. It's just plain idiotic for it to have to have a 'Drugs Is Bad, Yo' sticker on the front.
Moon-Hawk
Haha, definitely true.
This is a "lo-fi" version of our main content. To view the full version with more information, formatting and images, please click here.
Dumpshock Forums © 2001-2012